Next Stop...Haworth!

Good Heavens

by Northern Life


Danny Abrahams had never touched a paintbrush before the age of 32. Yet, in the space of a decade he has become one of Yorkshire’s most beloved painters with his nostalgia-inspired pieces. Sweeping the viewer off their feet and setting them down in familiar northern settings that are twisted in wonder, the Bradford-born artist has captured the world of childlike innocence filled with fun, adventure and playing out until tea-time.

Danny Abrahams

“It was just something I thought I’d have a go at. Now I feel so blessed to be in galleries, especially when you think of how many people went to art school and dream of this all their life,” said Danny.

His paintings take inspiration from the beauty of northern landscapes, often depicting scenes of nostalgia, naivety, exploration, community and industrialism. Danny finds beauty in everyday images and things we take for granted, whether that be the sentimental feeling of childhood wonder we all, deep down, yearn for, or the natural beauty of tall trees, open fields and, prominently featuring in all of his pieces, the cloud-filled Yorkshire sky.

Next Stop…Haworth!

Before he found the world of art, Danny worked with lighting, starting out sign fixing with his dad immediately after leaving school and then working with neon lights soon after. It was during this time that he discovered his passion for painting, something he thanks his wife for.

All Tracks Lead To New Adventures!

“She does like to rub it in my face a bit that if she hadn’t bought me those paints I wouldn’t be painting”, he laughs. “As you get older, you realise how precious your time is, and so it’s alright being in a job for the rest of your life but if you’re not enjoying it then what’s the point?”

“I’d really no interest in art whatsoever..”

Unfortunately, at the same time as finding his love for painting, Danny unexpectedly lost his sister, Gemma, when she was just 30. “That was just as I was getting to the stage where I was deciding whether it was worth the plunge to leave my job. Losing my sister so suddenly changed my outlook on life altogether – it was like I either go for it now or I never go for it because life’s too short and you never know what’s round corner.”

Let Your Dreams Take Flight

Since then, Danny has been able to devote himself to his art, rising from someone new to the medium completely to someone selling pieces rising in value – a journey that should not be understated as he is completely self-taught. “I remember needing some sort of guidance when I first began, so I started looking on YouTube and buying books about different techniques. I kept trying to cram myself with information and I realised it was blocking my natural flow of being an artist and being creative. I got rid of all that and decided to follow my own path. I suppose that’s what caused me to have my own style.

“The first ever painting I did was just a little barn in a little field from one of those art books I bought. I started out using acrylics at first, but quickly realised I couldn’t get those big, sweeping skies with them. Danielle couldn’t believe I had done it myself. I tried oil paint after that, I didn’t even know what it was when I started using it, but I’ve come to realise that’s what I prefer – oil onboard. That medium allows me to paint these big skies, and so I’ve stuck with it.”

Where The Winds Blow

Said skies are one of the most prominent, and powerful, subjects in Danny’s work. He describes them as an “everyday natural wonder that most of us take for granted. The sky has a beauty and rawness that never ceases to amaze me.”

“Haworth, Stanbury, Oakworth Valley Railway – all these places seem lost in time”

Success as an artist has allowed Danny and his family to open a gallery that could host a large collection of his paintings. Abrahams Gallery opened in 2020 on Haworth’s Main Street. “It is my sister Victoria’s gallery. She always wanted to open a shop on the main street, so we just decided let’s go for it. It just felt right having a gallery in Haworth, it felt like the sort of place I could paint my Yorkshire scenes and fit in. It’s unbelievable how many people come to visit it on weekends!” The gallery is open from 11:30am-4pm from Thursday to Sunday.

Setting Off Across Haworth Moor

Being located in Haworth has allowed Danny to be further inspired by the natural beauty of Yorkshire landscapes. “There’s so much nostalgia that you can’t go wrong with painting around that area; you have Haworth, Stanbury, Oakworth valley railway – all these places that seem lost in time.”

A Stroll Down The Cobbles

Danny’s continued hard work and devotion to his art has evidently paid off, gaining national recognition for his work, with it being exhibited and sold all over the country. On the 12th November, Danny has an upcoming winter exhibition at the Acorn Gallery in Pocklington, and just in time for Christmas, there will be another exhibition on the 11th December at Abraham’s Gallery in Haworth. Not only is his work, with their stunning skyscapes and varied colour palettes, just a joy to look at, but he’s managed to capture a sense of deep nostalgia that all us northern folk can relate to in one way or another.

But more than anything, Danny is testament that it is never too late in life to find your passion, nor is it too late to discover new talents, to experiment, to learn, to fail, to succeed and find your true self.

NorthernLife Nov/Dec 2022